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2024 Bees


Purchasing a Bee Starter: Single, Nuc, or Package?

Blake, a seasoned beekeeper and co-owner of the Bee Supply, shares valuable insights for newcomers wondering whether to start their beekeeping journey with a single hive, a nucleus (nuc), or a bee package. With nearly two decades of experience, Blake outlines the advantages and challenges associated with each option to help beginners make an informed choice.

Pros and Cons of Single, Nuc, or Package Bees for Sale

  • Packages of Bees: Cheapest initial investment, containing about three pounds of bees including a mated queen. This option requires transferring the bees into a pre-prepared hive, making it straightforward but slower in colony establishment.
  • Pros of Packages: Ideal for budget-conscious beginners or those with existing equipment from previous beekeeping experiences. This option allows for a lower upfront cost and simple installation.
  • Cons of Packages: Higher risk and slower growth as the bees need time to establish themselves and produce honey, typically not yielding honey in the first year.
  • Nucleus (Nuc): A mid-tier option that includes a small, functional colony in a five-frame setup, complete with brood, a laying queen, and some honey. This pre-established mini-hive allows for quicker colony development.
  • Pros of Nucs: Faster colony establishment due to existing brood and a familiar queen, reducing the risk and speeding up the production timeline.
  • Cons of Nucs: Slightly higher cost than packages, but still reasonable considering the reduced risk and increased speed of development.
  • Complete Hive: The most expensive option, offering a fully functional hive ready to produce honey in the first year. This is the most comprehensive starter solution, requiring minimal setup upon delivery.
  • Pros of Complete Hives: Best chance for a successful first-year honey crop, foolproof setup with all equipment included, and no additional installation needed.
  • Cons of Complete Hives: Highest initial investment, though when considering the included equipment and established colony, the cost may be justifiable.

Bees for Sale in Texas: Options Near Me 

For new beekeepers, the choice between a package, nuc, or complete hive depends on one’s budget, risk tolerance, and desired speed of colony development. Each option has its merits, with packages being the most economical, nucs providing a balance of cost and ease of startup, and complete hives offering the quickest and most foolproof start. Blake encourages all prospective beekeepers to consider these factors carefully to find the best fit for their beekeeping ambitions and resources.

Quick Comparision Guide - Bees for Sale

Feature 2024 Texas 5000 Nuc 2024 Golden Nuc 2024 Texas 5000 Single Story 2024 Golden Single Story
Queen Type Unmarked or Marked Unmarked or Marked Unmarked or Marked Unmarked
Genetics Carniolan and Italian Golden Cordovan Italian Carniolan and Italian Golden Cordovan Italian
Known For Stamina & Honey Production Gentleness & Honey Production Stamina & Honey Production Gentleness & Honey Production
Frames of Brood 2-3 2-3 Min. 3 Min. 3
Frames of Honey/Pollen 1-2 (1 may not have drawn comb) 1-2 (1 may not have drawn comb) N/A N/A
VSH (Varroa Sensitive Hygiene) Resistant Yes Yes Yes Yes
Pro Nuc Box Included Included N/A N/A
Woodenware N/A N/A Included (10 frame box, 9 frames installed) Included (10 frame box, 9 frames installed)
Newly Painted Equipment N/A N/A Box, Telescoping Lid, Solid Bottom Board Box, Telescoping Lid, Solid Bottom Board
Transporting Equipment 5-Frame Pro Nuc for transport 5-Frame Pro Nuc for transport N/A N/A
Healthy Hive Guarantee Yes Yes Yes Yes
Money Back Promise 14 Days 14 Days 14 Days 14 Days
Pickup Instruction Emails 1 Week Prior 1 Week Prior 1 Week Prior 1 Week Prior
Breed Comparison Chart Access Yes Yes Yes Yes
Location Blue Ridge, Dayton, or Round Rock, Texas Blue Ridge, Dayton, or Round Rock, Texas Blue Ridge, Dayton, or Round Rock, Texas Blue Ridge, Dayton, or Round Rock, Texas

Which is a Better Bee? The TX5000 or Golden Cordovan?

Blake, an experienced commercial beekeeper and owner at the Bee Supply, discusses the key differences between two popular bee breeds: the TX5000 and the Golden Cordovan. Both breeds are noted for their mite resistance and unique traits suitable for different beekeeping environments. This summary explores their characteristics to help potential beekeepers make an informed decision.

Key Differences and Traits

  • Mite Resistance: Both the TX5000 and Golden Cordovan bees have been selectively bred for enhanced resistance to mites, an essential trait for healthier bee colonies.
  • Breeding Focus: The TX5000 bees are selected from the strongest and most durable out of 5,000 hives, focusing on productivity and resilience, while the Golden Cordovan bees incorporate traits from the gentle Cordovan breed, prioritizing gentleness and calmness.
  • Color and Temperament: Golden Cordovans tend to be lighter in color and very gentle, making them ideal for urban or backyard beekeeping where interaction with people and pets is frequent.
  • Adaptability: TX5000 bees are bred to be tough and hearty, suited for more rural settings where robust characteristics are necessary for survival and productivity.
  • Hybrid Vigor: The Golden Cordovans are a hybrid, incorporating 50% of genetics from the gentle Cordovan breed and 50% from the robust TX5000, offering a blend of gentleness and durability.
  • Behavior in Adverse Conditions: Despite adverse weather conditions like wind and rain, Golden Cordovan bees remain calm and manageable, demonstrating their suitability for less controlled environments.
  • Handling and Interaction: Both bee types exhibit gentle behavior, with TX5000 bees also showing gentleness despite a few becoming inquisitive during hive interactions.
  • Honey Production: TX5000 bees are particularly noted for their high honey production, a significant consideration for commercial beekeeping.
  • Practical Recommendations: Blake suggests using beekeeping gear like veils for safety, highlighting the bees' generally gentle nature but cautioning against complacency.

Both the TX5000 and Golden Cordovan bees offer unique advantages for different beekeeping needs. The TX5000 is ideal for those requiring strong, productive colonies in rural areas, while the Golden Cordovan is excellent for beekeepers who prioritize gentleness and are perhaps operating in suburban or urban settings. Beekeepers are encouraged to consider their specific circumstances and may even consider experimenting with both types to see which breed best suits their environment and beekeeping style. For further guidance, contacting a professional or experienced beekeeper like Blake can provide additional insights tailored to individual needs.


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